For cloudy days… colorful umbrellas. The truth is, sometimes we don’t know why, but after a gray day, an even darker one comes. Then another, until it all links together one season of bad times that it’s hard to get your head out of.
This is normal. Believe it or not, but you are not the only person that feels uncomfortable or feels like nothing is going right at times.
We all go through difficult times of personal anguish. No matter how high the sun is in the sky, it seems like it just isn’t shining on you.
Sometimes you don’t even need anything “bad” to happen to you. It’s more or less a slow, deep apathy, an uncomfortable malaise that puts you in a bad mood, and even causes you to lose hope.
For those days, what you definitely need is a colorful umbrella. These are invisible shields that help protect you from toxic people, negative thoughts, fear and worry. We suggest you open it more and more every day, and we’ll explain how.
Your emotional umbrellas on cloudy days
Emotional umbrellas are impassable barriers that protect your self-esteem and also add color to those gray emotions, those emotions that are somewhat dim.
Something to keep in mind is that we all have the right to experience dark days. Embracing your demons and recognizing your fears is undoubtedly therapeutic: it allows you to get to know yourself better.
But after hitting rock bottom, you absolutely must get up. And you’ll be motivated by renewed strength, with more intense hope. Because remember: the day you wake up without hope is a day lost.
Martin Seligman is a renowned psychologist that represents an interesting current of positive psychology. It’s actually really interesting to study his professional trajectory, because for some time, he was referred to for anything regarding depression. He even coined important terms, like learned helplessness.
But he slowly realized that most of the areas of psychology were oriented towards the field of disease, or the more complex dimensions related to negative emotions.
Up until now, no one has bothered to teach what it is to “be happy,” to let go of your colorful umbrellas to let the breeze of happiness take you, free from your dark storms.
Since then, thanks to books like “Authentic Happiness” or “Learned Optimism,” Seligman has offered wonderful strategies for becoming more capable when it comes to creating well-being. This is the vital energy innate in self-improvement and happiness.
We’ll explain below what the 5 steps are that, according to Seligman, build happiness. These help open your colorful umbrellas. This technique is called “PERMA” and corresponds to each of these keys.
P – Positive Emotions
The more positive emotions you have, the happier you are. It seems like too obvious of a rule, but…how do you achieve this?
- Change your thoughts and you will create a new emotion.
- Start with small things…the most elemental of things. Something so basic as getting out of bed thinking “today is going to be a good day” could be enough.
- Another suggestions could be, for example, “I’m not going to let what that person says affect me” or “today I’m going to care for myself, and make myself a priority.”
E – Engagement
In this key, Martin Seligman proposes the following: being able to positively engage yourself in every daily activity.
Try it. Even though your work might be routine or slightly boring, try to see these obligations in another light, with another perspective.
R – Relationship
Your day-to-day relationships could be a major point of happiness, or conversely, they could be what causes you your greatest headache.
Open your colorful umbrellas once again to protect yourself from people that want to bring you problems, worry, or anguish. Distance yourself. Then, get close to people who truly enrich your life, that bring you happiness and light.
M – Meaning
This dimension is slightly more complex, but easily understood. This is about becoming involved in things that give you meaning, a sense of usefulness.
Feeling useful while also comfortable and hopeful with certain projects or people can help your well-being flourish every day.
Find something that motivates you, that brings you hope, and that makes you feel good and useful about yourself.
A – Accomplishment
Feeling like you’re capable of reaching your goals, like you’re skilled, your efforts are reimbursed, they all make up your accomplishments that also bring happiness.
The key is to be persistent. You can’t lose hope or drive. Dance every day under your colorful umbrellas that protect you from cloudy days.